Fun Making Gingerbread Houses With Purple Group

The following post is shared by 10th Street parent Heather Piper (Emily Blumenthal’s mom).

Alyssa and I had so much fun making gingerbread houses with our children, Michael Goddard and Emily Blumenthal, and the rest of the Purple Group.  Here is how we did it:

With a a pizza cutter, saw a graham cracker into 2 squares. Saw off top corners of another cracker to create a peaked roof; make 2. If you are doing this, be sure to have a lot of graham crackers. They break easily when you are cutting the peaks.

Use a strong paper plate or piece of cardboard.  Dip graham cracker in hot, melted brown sugar. A skillet worked perfectly, as you have to keep the sugar super hot while you are working. First do the bottom and straight edges of a peaked piece. Repeat to add sugar glue onto edges of a square piece, and adhere it to peaked cracker. Adhere other pieces with the sugar glue.

Saw a cracker into 2 squares for the roof. Spread sugar glue on to the roof pieces. Let house dry over night.

Decorate with fondant (see recipe below). Frosting in a can also works.  Green can frosting can make wreaths for the door. Red vines cut into pieces make great doors. Tootsie rolls cut into half, criss-crossing, with an orange gumdrop, make great fires. M & Ms can teach the kids about patterns (they seemed to really like that task of red, green, red, green). We had 17 children in the group today. We just worked it like an assembly line. First, start on the peak of the roof by lining it with fondant.  Then do the base of the house with fondant.  Ice the licorice to make the doors.  And then you can get really creative, if you have time, by making windows, chimneys, wreaths, and shingles on the roof.

Fondant recipe: The recipe I had called for meringue powder and confectioner’s sugar. Meringue powder is impossible to find. This is Alton Brown’s recipe. We did not want the kids to have raw egg white so we made a safe substitution and it worked great. We just used a heavy duty Ziploc and cut off a small corner.


3 ounces pasteurized egg whites (not sure what this would be. We decided to use Deb El’s Just Whites. Just follow instructions on bottle to mix up 3 liquid ounces of whites)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 cups confectioners’ sugar

In large bowl of stand mixer combine the egg whites and vanilla and beat until frothy. Add confectioners’ sugar gradually and mix on low speed until sugar is incorporated and mixture is shiny. Turn speed up to high and beat until mixture forms stiff, glossy peaks. This should take approximately 5 to 7 minutes. Add food coloring, if desired. For immediate use, transfer icing to pastry bag or heavy duty storage bag and pipe as desired. If using storage bag, clip corner. Store in airtight container in refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Due to the fact that our hands were covered in frosting, we only have a few pictures. Hopefully, the Purple Group parents are enjoying the latest creations at home.
Happy Holidays!
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